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The Power of Front End Merchandizing

Many stores struggle to make a profit because they don’t capitalize on the power of front end merchandizing. They may have some items displayed at the check-out counters, but they could do much better. Traditionally front end displays generate more than 1 percent of the store’s sales and over 1.5 percent of the profit. Can you think of ways to increase these percentages?

You may be surprised to know that the checkout area is often one of the most under-utilized areas in a store. Store owners may be content to allow the same suppliers to dominate the checkout area without giving it much thought. Perhaps it’s time to shake things up a bit and bring new life to this important and potentially profitable section of the store.

  Be aware of how valuable the front end is to the store’s overall sales and profits. The front is prime real estate in any store. Even though people may walk through the aisles to find what they’re looking for, every person who makes a purchase must pass by – and often wait – in line. By focusing on front end merchandising it will be possible to increase your store’s profit potential.
  Hire someone dedicated to managing the front end as if it were a specific department in the store. This person may need training to teach them how to market the front end effectively but the end result could pay for itself very quickly.
  Try to base all decisions concerning the front end on total profits from placement fees and sales revenue rather than only straight sales. This may mean you’ll need to move some items which have been near the checkout and bring in some new ones.
  Place high-frequency, high-impulse items near the front. These items include candy, magazines and beverages which comprise up to 80 percent of all sales from the front end. Don’t be afraid to reinvent the area to determine the best products and the best way to display those items.
  Magazines can be displayed at the checkout counter as well as on an end cap. Provide customers with several opportunities to pick them up and there should be more magazine sales. Be sure to keep the best-selling titles near the checkout for those who are impulse buyers. In this case, more is not better.

If you’re trying to capitalize on the power of front end marketing, take the above into consideration. These guidelines can help you take advantage of the prime store real estate you find at the front and make the most out of it.

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